I found something interesting… burried at the end of San Francisco Old Mint Commemorative Coin Act (Public Law No 109-230 [GPO: Text, PDF]) in Section 8 that reads “the Secretary of the Treasury may continue to issue, after December 31, 2005, numismatic items that contain 5-cent coins minted in the years 2004 and 2005.” This is a technical correction to the Lewis and Clark Expedition Bicentennial Commemorative Coin Act (Public Law No. 106-126, Sections 301-309 [GPO: Text, PDF]) that said the Mint had to stop selling the Lewis and Clark nickels as of December 31, 2005.
On July 21, the US Mint announced that the “remaining bags and rolls of nickels, first day coin covers and silver proof sets containing the nickels will go on sale at noon (ET) on July 25, 2006.” These items are now listed in the Mint’s online catalog for ordering. The entry for the 2005 Silver Proof set says that it will be available for shipping on August 8. With the time limits removed from the law, the Mint can sell these items until they are sold out.
While this may be good for the Mint, the additional inventory being added to the market will reduce the future value of Westward Journey Series collectibles. While these coins do not have more than collectors value at this time, I was hoping that their value would increase for my heirs so that those who do not take up the hobby could get something for the collection.